Mercadante_Belief_coverBelief without Borders: Inside the Minds of the Spiritual But Not Religious [SBNR]

Dr. Mercadante’s most recent book Belief without Borders: Inside the Minds of the Spiritual but not Religious, [Oxford University Press and  ebook, including Kindle], is getting much attention. 

 Read what these publications say:

The National Catholic Reporter 

Spirituality & Practice

First Things

THE Times Higher Education

The Columbus Dispatch

The Christian Century

 Publishers’ Weekly

Association for Mormon Letters

Goodreads

She also blogs on this topic for The Huffington Post, CNN.com, and OUPblog

Click on these links to read more:

“Examining the Growth of the SBNRs,” The  New York Times

“Good News about the Spiritual but not Religious”

“Are the SBNRs Turning East?

“SBNRs: Knowing the Types, Avoiding the Traps”

“Going, Going, Gone, Books Studies Exodus from Religion”

“Theology Prof Advises Faiths on Reaching the SBNRs”

Prof. Interviewed in Columbus Dispatch”

“The Seeker Next Doors: What Drives the SBRNs?”

“Religious Indifferents: What’s the Big Deal Anyway?”

“Spirituality and Practice”

Upcoming Events for and about SBNRs

You are welcome to attend any of these events. Write me if you need further details.

*Sept. 12, 9:00 a.m. — Mennonite Central District conference, at Columbus Mennonite Church, Oakland Park Ave, Clintonville

*Oct. 2, 9:00-3:30, Chaplains Association of Ohio, 890 W. Fourth St, Mansfield, OH

*Oct. 4, 8:00 pm EST, Interview, The Mystical Positivist radio show, from Sebastopol, CA

*Oct. 23-24, 10:00-3:00, Older Wiser Lifelong Scholars, Westminster-Thurber, 717 Neil Ave., Columbus, Ohio

*Oct. 27, 9:00-12:00, OhioHealth Pastoral Care retreat, Westerville Health Center, Westerville, OH

*Nov. 1, 9:00-3:30, Wellstreams Spiritual Directors conference, St. Mark’s Episcopal, 2151 Dorset Rd., Columbus

*Nov. 2 & 9, 9:30-10:30, Adult education, All Saints Lutheran, Worthington, Ohio

*Nov. 6, 7:00, Beyond Tolerance Address, Juniata College, Huntingdon, PA

*Nov. 7-8, Progressive Brethren Gathering, Stone Ch of the Brethren, Huntingdon, PA

*Nov. 10 afternoon, Peterson class, Trinity Lutheran Seminary, Bexley, OH

*Nov. 21-25, Religious Conversions, American Academy of Religion, San Diego, CA

*Feb. 9-10, Trinity Lutheran Seminary Winter Event, Bexley, OH

*Feb. 20-21, Spiritual Seekers event, First Community Church, Columbus, OH 

Why “Spiritual but not Religious”?

The fastest growing “religious” movement today is among those who claim to be “spiritual but not religious.” They avoid dogmatism, shun institutionalism, practice a variety of spiritualities and draw from many wells. How did this movement start and what can we learn from it? Most important, how can we serve the needs of this growing group of determined seekers?

Contact Dr. Mercadante to speak to your group on:

“Who are the Spiritual But Not Religious?” [SNBR]
People who self-identify as SBNR can be found both inside and outside religion, in all age groups and parts of the country. What ties them together? Just how diverse are they? What do they believe? Learn more about what researchers call the fastest growing “religious group” in America.

“Many Journeys – Many Practices”
Dr. Mercadante has interviewed over 85 SBNRs, had hundreds of conversations and made many site visits. Learn about these intriguing persons who self-identify as ‘spiritual but not religious, including their backgrounds, spiritual journeys, hopes, ethics, and practices.

“Meeting and Serving SBNR Folk”
Why do SBNRs distance themselves from organized religion?  Is there anything that can be done? How can religion help them find spiritual health, community, sacred space, and a way to ‘give back.’

“The Background of the SBNR Movement”
The ‘spiritual but not religious’ movement has many roots and traditions.  Learn some of the historical, sociological, psychological and theological factors which have combined in a “perfect storm” to produce the recent and growing phenomenon of non-religious spiritual seeking.

Sample Her Research on the “SBNR” phenomenon:

Read the Publishers Weekly review of Dr. Mercadante’s latest book on the SBNR movement http://www.publishersweekly.com/978-0-19-993100-2

Read Dr. Mercadante’s most recent blog post on CNN.com http://religion.blogs.cnn.com/2014/02/22/good-news-about-the-spiritual-but-not-religious/

Hear her speak with Ann Fisher of “All Sides” at WOSU AM, a National Public Radio affiliate
http://www.wosu.org/students/www.wosu.org/allsides/?archive=1&date=08/12/2010

Hear her speak with Fred Andrle of “Open Line” at WOSU AM, a National Public Radio affiliate
http://www.wosu.org/radio/radio-open-line/?archive=1&date=06/10/2008

Read the front-page article about Dr. Mercadante’s project in the Boulder (Colorado) Daily Camera:
http://www.mtso.edu/main/bouldermercadante4-27-08.pdf

Read the PCNews Online article that was picked up by many other websites:
http://www.pcusa.org/pcnews/2008/08779.htm

News Flash:

Dr. Mercadante awarded Henry Luce III Fellowship in Theology for her work on “Spiritual But Not Religious”

Project Summary:

Linda A. Mercadante, Methodist Theological School in Ohio, Unfettered Belief, Untethered Practice: Thinking Theologically about ‘Spiritual but not Religious’

Non-religious spiritual seekers claim doctrine is far less important than—even non-essential to—spiritual practice. Yet I sense an alternative meta-narrative developing among the “spiritual but not religious” [SBNR]. This influential ethos has definite theological implications, challenging and offering opportunities to Christianity especially in the areas of epistemology and concept of God. Ironically, in spite of its anti-hegemonic self-presentation, the SBNR ethos actually homogenizes and markets the voice of disparate spiritual “others” while championing hybridity and anti-dogmatism. I address the emerging narrative theologically, focusing on the four main conceptual areas of transcendence, human nature, community, and life-after-death. Preliminary analysis shows an emerging picture, including: a) a transcendent dimension consisting of an unknowable, impersonal, universal energy source; b) an ephemeral human nature with the eventual dissolution of identity in death, potentially with an amorphous energy dissipated or re-invested, and c) a restless search for community which often replicates a societal desire for more freedom, less commitment and minimally invasive contact. My approach includes in-depth interviews, observation, online and print research, blog conversation, and site visits. Early analysis of the first 60 interviews across North America also indicates an underlying eagerness among some SBNRs to excavate and examine belief. See “Resources” page for press release.